‘Church edging towards extinction’ – Mark Montebello

Fr Mark Montebello urges church to serve in humility, forget political privileges it acquired during the years, and shed any pretensions when it comes to reasoning and discourses.

The church is edging towards extinction, with no idea of how to steer away from this path, Dominican friar Mark Montebello believes.

In a frank interview with sunday newspaper ILLUM, Montebello says he doesn't expect the local church to undergo the necessary reforms and changes in the near future.

"At first, Archbishop Paul Cremona brought us hope that he was committed to take fundamental decisions to change mentality and direction, but this did not happen. Nowadays there's no political willingness to do so," Montebello says.

He argues the divorce campaign had a devastating effect on the ecclesiastical authorities, by focusing on technicalities and ignoring whether a moral concept should be imposed on all the population. He says the local church is committing the same mistake with the current issue of civil unions.

Montebello also calls on the local church to serve in humility, forget political privileges it acquired during the years, and shed any pretensions when it comes to reasoning and discourses.

A few months ago, Mark Montebello was sent to serve in Mexico for some time, but he refuses to compare his experience to the political exile suffered by Manuel Dimech, one of his all-time heroes and inspirations. However, he confirms that this was a move to silence him for a while.

"I was sent there because my superiors believed the extraordinary pressure that the Archbishop was exerting on me would lead to an open and ugly confrontation."

During the interview, Montebello also speaks about his relationship with the Labour Party, Civil Unions and whether he agrees with the decriminalisation of soft drugs.

Read more in today's edition ILLUM

If the church as Christ Himself put it, is the people(the grass roots) then it will not die, because Christ is always making things new, if the church is the building then yes I tend to agree it risks total shutdown.
It is of no surprise Fr Mark. The Church has been giving more importance to the alliances between Cardinals and bishops with emperors and political dictators. BUT IT IS OF A BIG SURPRISE READING A FEW MINUTES AGO THAT MGR SCICLUNA IS MORE CONCERNED ABOUT THE SELLING OF PASSPORTS THAN THE BIG RELIGIOUS PROBLEMS THE CHURCH IS FACING TODAY.
Fr Montebello is right in the following scenario..ie That the Christian Religion and its Church must die, like its founder, so that like Christ, she will rise again...This is her Mystery.
The reality is the church will head for extinction whichever way it goes. Whether it changes or not it will be an anachronism in today's world. The church represents a belief in something that is not proven like all other religions.
Finally we have a priest who tries to make some sense and yet they try to shut him up what a disgrace.
ALL religions eventually evolve into nothing more than mythology. Just how many "dead" gods are abandoned throughout out history are virtually uncountable. Christianity will inevitably follow the same path into oblivion
Of course it is, that is only natural. The catholic ideology has been outdated for centuries and the only thing which kept it influential throughout the ages was it's political power. Now that people do not care what the church says, it's demise is inevitable. Alternatively, it can adapt the Jesuit philosophy of readjusting morals according to the soul of the age, but that would only make it hypocritical, for "god's will" should not change according to people's lifestyle.
Sometimes Fr Montebello makes a lot of sense and sometimes like most of us he does not. He is a rebel and he fights for what he believes in and the hell with his superiors which in a way sometimes it is not so bad. Although one might say he is a very colourful and very controversial at times. He does not jump when he is told to jump like most of us and mostly he despises authority of any kind. He reminds me of somebody in the last parliament who behaved like that and he managed to bring in a new general election before it's time. No I am not talking about AG. This man was not sent to Mexico to reflect about his ways, it seems this smart man was given a piece of the pie and that quieted him down. That is too bad because a lot of people believed in him and somehow those people felt he let them down when he decided to sell his soul to the devil. I don't think anybody is going to quiet Fr Montebello because nobody knows how to do that, not even the church.
Luke Camilleri
With the state of its Media with RTK and Newsbook.com And the ex-PN journalists that took over the newsroom ~ there is NO Hope of moving forward!